My great-great grandfather's letter of March 18th, 1863 continued with his dinner...
"I had a good Beef Soup for Dinner. I have enough left to feed your whole family. I wish you was here to help eat some. I have not got the box yet ~ I heard it was at Falmouth 4 miles from here & as soon as the roads get better they will send them if there is anything that will spoil it will probably be so now." Remember all that mud..."I have sealed Aby's letter & shall send it this mail so you will get three letters from me at once. I will not prepay the postage on those Likenesses as I dont know how much they are & they will go safer I think without. I shall send you some money tomorrow. We was mustered in for 2 months pay again yesterday. We shall get paid again before we leave for the time is come when I must tell you we expect to leave here soon to be shipped..."
Shipped? Where to you ask?....
"Our destination is Galveston, Texas. Now Texas is a good ways off & we possibly shall see hard fighting there & hard times but if I can serve our Country better there than here. I am willing to go but I believe I would rather stay nearer home but the same God who has watched over & taken care of me here will protect me while so far away..."
I can only imagine the uncertainty that most troops felt and probably continue to feel when their futures are unknown, their destinations decided by others, their fates left up to God.
"I would like to come home once more & see you before I go but I am afraid my chance is slim for the first lot that went off have not all returned yet & we can't any of us go untill they all return in the Regts ~ The 1st Corps are going with us their destination is the same ~ we many not go under 3 or 4 weeks yet they are getting out 50 Transports for us ~ when you write again send me a map of the United States you can tear it out of some old Atlas, it will do me considerable good ~ We have no services here to day it is too windy & too muddy. The weather is warm it does not seem like the holy Sabbath ~ it is not very sickly at present except measles & Small Pox, the measles are closing up. I forgot to tell you that Nubern Armstrong was promoted yesterday to a Sergeant. I tell you he is a good soldier, one of the best in the Regiment. I like him first rate he will do well too & he certainly merits all the praise we can give him. I will do all I can to help him along. If he lives he will come home a Lieutenant he is as brave as you could wish in battle. I saw a shell strike within a few feet of him over the river but he never flinched while Rill fell down on the ground scared to death almost. Rill made a poor soldier, but I will have to close. My other likeness I will put in a seperate (sic) envelope. they are too wide to send good but I hope they will go safe. Write me as soon as you get them. Should we make any movement I will post you immediately. now write me immediately & if you have any send me some papers to read dont send me any more writing paper I have a large stock of it on hand now as I bought a good deal. Kiss the Baby. How I would like to see you both. May God Bless you. Love to all. Yours &c
That's it for today!
Join me again for the next post!